Christian 03

Paul Joseph Lindley

August 1, 1952 ~ June 6, 2023 (age 70) 70 Years Old


Paul Lindley

Paul went to be with our Heavenly Father on June 6, 2023. He had battled chronic heart disease dating back to his first heart attack in 2001. His earthly body could no longer support him, yet his beautiful soul was welcomed into the loving arms of his Savior Jesus with the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

If you asked anyone who came in contact with Paul Lindley who this man was, you would get many varied and unique answers. He never met a stranger, could make a connection with anyone, and he loved laughing and making others laugh and feel important. He was a Pastor, Husband, Father, Grandfather (Papa), Best-Friend, Spiritual guide, Brother, Son, Substitute Teacher, Cousin (he has many of those around), Handyman, and the list goes on.

On Aug. 1, 1952, Arvid and Sunny Lindley welcomed their firstborn, Paul Joseph Lindley. The son of a pastor, he and his sister Sheryl grew up bouncing from one small Montana town to the next. Starting in Rapelje, to Reed Point and Big Timber until they landed in Missoula, where he graduated from Sentinel High School in 1970. His sister reports he was popular everywhere they lived; he was president of a statewide youth group in high school and a member of various school clubs wherever he resided. He excelled in athletics and academics in his youth and was accepted into several prestigious universities, including Duke and Stanford, but chose to stay close to home and enrolled at the University of Montana (UM). He loved music, enjoyed singing, and played the trumpet through high school, which is the trumpet that both his son and grandson now play.

While attending the UM, he met his first wife, Cindi Weingart, and had their first son, Andrew, while living in Missoula. Early in their marriage, they moved to Portland, Oregon, where he chose to follow in his father and grandfather’s footsteps and entered the seminary at Western Evangelical Seminary. During their time in Portland, they were blessed with the birth of their second son, Peter, who has been waiting with the Lord for Paul for 41 years. After he finished seminary, they found themselves back in Montana, where Paul started his ministry at Hawthorne Evangelical Church in the Billings Heights. Their third son, Jonathan, arrived shortly after, followed by their daughter Amy Seon Rejoice!, who was born in South Korea.

In 1987, Paul was asked to come and preach a “few” sermons at the Nye Community Church. After five years of a “few” sermons, he was asked to officially become Nye’s full-time pastor. The early years of the Nye church were held at the one-room school building at Limestone, until 1991, when a new church was completed. He was an integral part, along with many volunteers in the community, of the construction of the building still used today.

In 1992, Paul married the love of his life, Beverly Smith (Mudd). At the time, Bev was a single mom of seven and studying to be a nurse. Paul, already being a father of three himself, loved the idea of a large family. The blending of families has resulted in 10 kids, 25 grandkids and two (soon to be three) great-grandkids

After their marriage, Paul, along with Bev, and several of their kids still at home, returned to the area he loved by moving to the Stillwater Valley. He became an integral member of the community as the go-to pastor for weddings, funerals and baptisms. He served on the school board, was a substitute teacher and even became the voice of the Absarokee Huskies football as an announcer for many years. He nurtured many relationships with the youth in the community by starting a morning Bible Study for middle and high school students that provided both fellowship and a hearty breakfast. He lived out, and shared with everyone, the importance of putting God first in one’s life.

Paul was not only a Preacher who was a natural behind the pulpit, he had many other jobs throughout his lifetime, from the early years of bagging and delivering groceries in Big Timber, working summers on the Scholten ranch, to delivering flowers as a college student in Missoula and managing Mountain Bell phone company in Portland. Paul was a natural salesman, as it gave him an opportunity to make new friends wherever he went. He worked for All American Bumper and Plating, sold cars for DJ Volkswagen and Laurel Ford, where he was salesman of the month more often than not, and sold cleaning supplies for BRUCO. After he became a full-time pastor, he worked as a wrangler at a local dude ranch, and was owner of It’s Doable (ID) Construction, and you can find much of his handiwork in houses around the Nye Valley.

Paul served as the President of Sowers International USA, where he traveled to Africa more than once and developed a fondness for its people. He was a member of Kiwanis and a regular speaker for Walk to Emmaus. He spent time as volunteer chaplain for the Billings Police Department and Hospice, and was a “fifth step” spiritual advisor for Rimrock Foundation. Because of his service to the Lord, a highlight of his ministry was being sponsored by the Masons for a visit to the Holy Land.

His many hobbies included woodworking — he created many toys, trucks and high chairs for grandkids, attending any auction (or finding treasures at the transfer station), backpacking and the outdoors, fishing and hunting with kids and grandkids, being a “vocal” sports fan for school sporting events, baking and cooking for his family, and being an amazing grandchild cake decorator, and sharing his stories, which will live on.

He is preceded in death by his parents Arvid and Sunny Lindley; his second son, Peter; and his son, Kevin Mudd. He is survived by his sister, Sheryl; his loving wife, Beverly Lindley of Nye; his kids, Andrew (Clementine) Lindley of Billings, Jonathan (Shauntel) Lindley of Oregon City, Oregon, Amy (Tim) Loomis of Las Vegas, Nevada, Lisa (Brian) Losness of Boise, Idaho, Becky (Mike) Bell of Friday Harbor, Washington, Elizabeth Libby (Jason) Wenderski of Big Lake, Minnesota, Danielle (Jeff) Watson of Billings, Matthew (Lindy) Mudd of Montana City, Jonathan (Alyssa) Mudd of Tirana, Albania; his grandchildren, Isaiah (Brenna) Lindley, Aidrian and Tessa Lindley, Luka, Oliver and Spencer Lindley, Ethan and Madisyn Loomis, Amanda (Matt) Losness-Ross, Reilly and Trevor Losness, Michael, Marissa and Bridger Bell, Maia, Brenna, Kyla and Connor Wenderski, Braden and Zeke Watson, Justus and Shiloh Mudd and Kynslee, Caleb and Quinn Mudd; great-grandchildren, Odette Lindley and Caspian Ross. He is also survived by a special “adopted” daughter, Christie Salava and her children Ben and Emma, who also considered him Papa; his large extended family of many aunts, uncles and cousins, and too many friends to count.

A special thank you to his long-term cardiologist, Dr. Robert Terry and Nurse Susan and their medical team, most who were there since 2001 after his first heart attack, and who supported him all these years. Thank you to Stillwater Hospice for supporting Paul during his final weeks of life. And a special thank you to his long time doctor and friend, Dr. Richard Klee in Columbus.

Visitation will be from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 11, at the Nye Community Church. Funeral service will be at 11 a.m. Monday, June 12, with a visitation one hour before, also at the Nye Community Church. Burial will be immediately following service at the Nye Cemetery. A potluck reception following the burial will be at the Two Rivers Lodge in Nye.

Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary of Billings is assisting with the arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Sowers International PO Box 700, Forest Lake, MN 55025; Stillwater Hospice, 3737 Grand Ave, Suite 1, Billings, MT 59102; and the Nye Community Church, PO Box 555, Nye, MT 59061.

If you asked him, he would say he was just a humble country pastor. Like the Josh Wilson song he loved, “It’s a pastor at a tiny little church, Forty years of loving on the broken and the hurt, These simple moments change the world, Dream small. Don’t buy the lie you’ve got to do it all, Just let Jesus use you where you are, One day at a time, Live well.”

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June 11, 2023

3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Nye Community Church
1760 Nye Road
Nye, MT 59061

Funeral Service
June 12, 2023

11:00 AM
Nye Community Church
1760 Nye Road
Nye, MT 59061


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